2019-20 Sky Bet Championship: Week 31 – Saturday

Nottingham Forest face a tough test of their automatic promotion hopes as they welcome rivals, Leeds United to the City Ground. 

Should Fulham lose at Blackburn earlier in the day, Forest can go third and one point behind Leeds with a win here.

Leeds meanwhile can potentially go top for at least 20 hours, with West Bromwich Albion not playing until Sunday afternoon at Millwall. 

 

Team news

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Samba Sow is in contention to return for Nottingham Forest after a knee injury sidelined him in their 2-1 defeat at Birmingham City last weekend. 

Tendayi Darikwa (knee) remains Forest’s only long-term absentee. 

Leeds could hand Jean-Kevin Augustin a Championship debut, having joined on loan from RB Leipzig late last month. 

Gaetano Berardi (calf) is also expected to be in contention but Kalvin Phillips (suspension) is still sidelined. 

 

Form

Forest saw a seven match unbeaten league run ended last weekend at Birmingham (W5, D2, L1), but have taken just one clean sheet from their last four home games during that run. 

Leeds enter this match with just four points from their last five outings (W1, D1, L3), whilst failing to keep a clean sheet in any of their last four away games since defeating Huddersfield 2-0 in early December. 

 

Stat Attack

  • Nottingham Forest are unbeaten in their last four meetings against Leeds United (W1, D3). 
  • Leeds have won just one of their last seven trips to Forest (W1, D2, L4).
  • Leeds’ Ezgjan Alioski has scored in each of his last two trips to Forest, with both goals coming in the second half. 

 

Prediction

Given how tight the promotion race is currently looking, defeat here could be decisive come end of season for the promotion hopes of either team. 

Throw in surprise losses last weekend then this is really make or break of which I am concerned for Leeds, because it was around now when their promotion dreams started its downwards descent into what would eventually be a Play-Off semi-final defeat. 

I therefore fancy Forest to edge this because they seem to have built some good momentum over the past month, despite their blip last weekend but Leeds will give them a good test despite the City Ground being a dodgy place for them in recent seasons.

Prediction: Nottingham Forest 2-1 Leeds United

Result: Nottingham Forest 2-0 Leeds United

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